There are many reasons why businesses may need to get rid of their old office furniture, including a lack of space, changing needs, or an impending sale. Whatever the reason, it’s important to have an effective plan in place before taking any action to reduce risk and keep your company secure. As well as reducing potential liability. Unwanted office furniture represents a financial burden for most business owners and can often be difficult to part with without finding another home for it. That’s why we’ve outlined the five most effective methods for getting rid of your unwanted office furnishings so you don’t end up paying for someone else’s sins in the future.

Plan your disposal well in advance

If you’re not sure how long you’ll be in business, it’s a good idea to start planning your disposal a few years ahead of time so you can get a better idea of the costs involved. You can also use this time to see what other opportunities will arise for your old furnishings and what other methods might be available for disposal. If it’s only been a few months since closing your business and you’re currently scrambling for a solution, you could find yourself at risk of running out of funds without a plan. That’s why you should start planning years before you need to address the issue so you can have time to address the issue with a level of financial predictability. As well as ensuring the method you choose is effective and safe.

Hold a furniture swap meet

If you’ve got a collection of the correct items and a suitable location, you could hold a furniture swap meet to see if anyone is interested in buying your old furniture. You’ll need to advertise the event online and in local publications to gain interest, but you can expect to get some inquiries. You’ll also need to spend some time at the event yourself to answer questions and make sure the swap is running smoothly. Even if you get a handful of interested buyers, though, it’s important to note that this method doesn’t necessarily generate any money for you. It’s more about redistributing the items and possibly making some new friends or contacts along the way.

Take your items to an auction house or estate sale

You might be surprised to hear that taking your items to an auction house or estate sale is an effective way of getting rid of them. In fact, some auction houses specialize in the reselling of unwanted goods and make a good profit on the process. Before taking your items to an auction house, though, you’ll need to make sure they’re fit for sale. That means they should be clean, organized, and free of damage. You could also arrange to have them checked by a competent engineer to make absolutely sure they’re safe. It’s also a good idea to have an auctioneer contact the potential buyers to give you some feedback on their interest so you can decide if you want to take the risk of selling on-site.

Donate your unwanted furniture to charity

If you’ve received any government grants and/or donations as part of your business, you might be able to donate your unwanted furniture to charity. Many charities will accept flood damaged, second-hand, or unwanted items, and you’ll be helping to support a worthy cause at the same time. You’ll need to first contact your donors to make sure they are willing to donate their goods, and to find out how they would like their gifts to be used. While it’s unlikely that you’ll make enough money to cover the value of the items, it’s still free money and could be useful.

Destroy it (in line with environmental legislation)

If you’ve got a particularly unwanted item, you could destroy it and release any remaining strain on your budget. That’s because it is largely a symbolic gesture and will have little cost impact. That being said, you’ll need to make sure you follow environmental legislation when doing so and don’t cause any damage to the surroundings. You might also decide to destroy any items you are not able to sell before the deadline, as this is another symbolic gesture that can help ease the financial strain on your business.

Store it securely and mark it for disposal

If you’ve got an excess of unwanted items, you could try storing them securely and marking the items for disposal. This means writing the words “FOR DISPOSAL” on each item. This will help you to remember which items need to be disposed of and give you a point of reference when you need to do so. It’s also a good idea to store less-frequently used items in a different part of the building so you don’t forget about them. That way, when you need to dispose of them, you’ll have a better chance of remembering which items are more important to keep.

Bottom line

Disposing of unwanted office furniture can be a costly and time-consuming process. However, by following these tips, you can ensure that it is done safely and efficiently. If you need help getting started, visit your local office supply store or call an office recycler to find out what items are allowed to be recycled and what rates apply to you.